Betdaq – the trading name of the Global Betting Exchange Alderney company which is licensed and regulated by the Alderney Gambling Control Commission – is a betting exchange (like market-leader Betfair) rather than a traditional bookmaker and thus give customers the opportunity to either bet on or lay off a particular selection. They were founded in 2000 by Dermot Desmond, an Irish entrepreneur, but in February 2013 they were purchased by Ladbrokes PLC which brings them a massive war chest of financial resources and gambling know-how as they attempt to usurp Betfair’s position as the exchange market leader.
One recent result of the Ladbrokes takeover is that Ladbrokes’ own betting exchange is being amalgamated with that of Betdaq which will give a (some would argue much-needed) boost to liquidity levels. They will hope this creates a snowball effect as they attempt to tempt some of their main rival’s customers by offering more favourable commission rates (3% for new members compared to the initial 5% at Betfair) and developing their products, markets and promotions.
Betdaq Welcome Offer
Betdaq have flirted with many different welcome offers and bonuses in recent years and often didn’t have any at all. We are hopeful that Ladbrokes will steady the ship in terms of introducing a welcome bonus that lasts longer than a month or two.
At the time of writing they are offering an excellent welcome bundle that includes the aforementioned 3% commission rate, up to £500 in free bets and an extra £20 free mobile bet. The £500 freebie starts with a £25 free bet when you have paid £25 in exchange commission and then a further £25 free bet for every £100 paid in exchange commission until you’ve had the full £500 worth of free bets. Okay, it will take a while to get the full bonus, but for regular bettors there should be plenty of bonuses coming your way. It’s a good idea to check the site for the latest details in case the offer has been amended (as they seem to be keen on doing from time to time).
Aside from the welcome bonuses, Betdaq also have a number of promotions that are worth noting. For instance they charge 0% commission on the first scheduled UK horse race every day, which is great news for racing fans. Football fans are also thrown a bone as there is always no commission charged on bets placed on Premier League matches that kick off at 12.45 on a Saturday.
There aren’t many more promotions to speak of at the time of writing but we are hopeful Ladbrokes’ influence will mean plenty more will materialise in the not too distant future, so again check their site regularly for any updates or new offers and bonuses.
One of the big criticisms of Betdaq amongst regular punters is their lack of liquidity in some of the less popular markets meaning those looking to back or lay cannot get a match at the odds they desire. This issue is set to lessen somewhat with the combination of this and the Ladbrokes exchange, but it remains to be seen whether this will be enough to rival Betfair in this regard.
Having said that, with the more popular markets and sports you will usually find a decent match and odds are generally comparable to Betfair, sometimes slightly better. But because Betdaq charge less commission to new customers it can often pay to favour this site if the liquidity is good.
As well as the main betting exchange, Betdaq also have a MultipleBet section for fans of accumulators, as well as a games suite. It is possible they might follow Betfair into the fixed odds sportsbook (probably using Ladbrokes’ own odds) but this does not yet appear imminent. They also accept a lot of in-play bets on a decent range of sports which will appeal to many fans of this relatively new way of betting.
They have developed a decent mobile betting product that allows punters access to all the markets that are available on a desktop, including the in-play markets, allowing you to back or lay at your pleasure when out and about.
Overall we think Betdaq are a decent alternative to Betfair and we expect them to start closing the gap over the coming years as Ladbrokes start to push them in the right direction.